Friday, May 29, 2015

Confession: I Never Watched Mad Men

It's very possible that I'm the only person on the planet who didn't tune into the phenomenon on Sunday nights known as Mad Men.

A few weeks ago, when the series ended and the finale was the social media story of the day, someone asked me: "So, do you think Don did or didn't write it?"

My response: "I have no idea what you're talking about."

Then, I admitted, my voice taking on more of apologetic tone than I would have liked: "I've never watched Mad Men." 

Cue audible gasp.

"But you WORK at an agency!"


When the show started all those years ago, a friend said to me, "I started watching Mad Men. It's SO good! It's like I have a sneak peek into your job and what you do all day!"


If that's the case, I hope they captured some of these poignant agency moments:

• The one where the characters were booked in back-to-back meetings all day without any sort of break, resulting in them actually starting their day at 6pm. Also? They didn't even have time to pour a scotch (or 3).

• The special holiday 2-hour episode when HR handed out drink tickets – only 2 each, people! – to Don, Peggy and the gang for the office Christmas party. (The first half of this episode explained why the holiday party was in mid-January, after a 5-hour Powerpoint meeting.)

• How about the one when Don Draper ate a can of soup from his desk drawer with a questionable expiration date out of desperation. I imagine the episode started with the email: "I scheduled our meeting from 12-1pm…it was the only time you were free today. Hope you don't mind."

• Or, the one when it took them seven meetings - yes, SEVEN; not one magical "carousel meeting" – to get it right with the client. 

• Remember when the AC was broken, oh, EVERY SUMMER? That episode when Don or Pete or Roger were perspiring through their suits? And the ladies were doing a little more than glistening? Because it was 90 degrees inside? And people were passing out? Talk about a cliff hanger!

• And – perhaps what would have been my favorite episode – the one where the creative team makes it out of the Sterling Cooper building on time to company outings, is able to take advantage of time off at the holidays, and doesn't find themselves presenting to the client while huddled in the corner of a casino on vacation (what? a little too much detail on that one?). I think the name of that episode was "Utopia".

So, if Mad Men showcased agency life similarly to the scenarios above, then, NO. I never watched the show.

Because I live it.

Saturday, May 2, 2015

Obituary to my former life

When you have a baby, it changes your life. 

Cliché, I know. 

But true.

I love Max more than I thought humanly possible. I love him so much that when I'm holding him, I just want to squeeze him, and eat him up (not literally, weirdos, though I have been known to munch on his ridiculously cute toes and cheeks).

A common question people ask you after you've had a baby is: "I bet you can't even remember life before Max!" then they tip their heads back and let out some co-conspirator 'Am I right?' parent laugh.

"Actually, I remember my life before Max pretty well," I say, and they stop laughing, as if I just told them I practice voodoo in the backyard.

I'm not saying I want to go back to life before Max – to be clear – but I'd be lying if I said I didn't remember it.

So it's today, Saturday morning at 6:16am, that I finally and formally bid adieu to the "used to's" and "remember when's" of my pre-Max life.

Pre Max, I was going to the gym 5 days a week, running 5Ks and wearing smaller pants.

I'm probably the only person who gained weight on maternity leave (when you don't have baby weight to lose, and you sit around entertaining people who come visit the baby, and have happy hour every night and cook gourmet meals and can't bring to tear yourself away from the baby to exercise, you tend to gain a few pounds).

And exercising now that I'm back at work? Um, right. When exactly should I do that? Should I give up one of the two hours I have with Max each day? Or should I get up at 4am instead of 5am? Maybe I should skip dinner (actually, that would probably help my case, but I like food too much).

Thursday Night Date Night
Up until 7 months ago, Thursday nights were usually our night to go sit at our local bar, have a few beers, eat a late dinner and catch up.

It was perfect, I was always working late, Mr. KK had time to come home and do some work around the house and yard, we usually had zero food left in the fridge for dinner by this point in the week (or stuff that I wasn't 'in the mood for'). We'd head out around 8pm, saddle up to the bar, and start our night.

Now? The only thing I'm starting at 8pm is my walk down the hall to put my pajamas on.

Last-minute anything
Lunch in Mystic.
Overnight trip to the casino.
Day drinking then coming home and taking a nap.
Taking a nap, period.
Running to Homegoods for a 3-hour quick trip.
Squeezing in a manicure.

There is nothing "last minute" about my life anymore.

(Except the last-minute cancellation of things I don't have time for)

Getting Ahead (and other mythical feelings)
Once you have kids you will never get ahead. You will never feel like you've caught up on life. Feeling accomplished is a thing of the past. You will forever and always be behind.

The only way to accept this is to lower your expectations of yourself. Plan to do only ONE thing (grocery shopping, planting flowers, taking a shower) and you won't be disappointed in yourself.

(Today my thing was "write a blog post" and look at that! It's 7am and I've already accomplished everything on my list for today! Yay, me!)

Remembering sh*t
Who said, 'Of all the things I've lost, I'll miss my mind the most?' Well, that's how I feel.

I used to be someone who was on top of every detail, remembered every birthday/holiday/event. It was rather impressing.

These days, it's not uncommon for me to walk into a room and not remember why I went in there in the first place. Birthdays sneak up on me (NOTE: if you mail a card to someone ON their actual birthday, they will not get said card before their birthday.)

So farewell, former life. It was a good run.

There's a new sheriff in town, and he's small, but mighty. 

And even if I had more hours in my days to do any of the stuff in the list above, I'd still choose to spend the time with him.